Ivana Milicevic has been playing Carrie Hopewell, a soccer mom with a very dark past on Cinemax’s freshman series “Banshee,” but in last week’s episode she turned into an incredibly fierce fighting force.
There had been hints of who Carrie was (and could still be) in early episodes this season, but last week she exploded when confronted with a man from her past – her father’s right-hand henchman, Olek (Christos Vasilopoulos) – who she took on in an epic battle in Lucas Hood’s (Antony Starr) rundown hovel.
There was punching, kicking, tearing and stabbing with various objects found in that shack Lucas had called home. And things ended in a very bloody mess, with Olek dead, and Lucas finding Carrie (former name Ana) very near death.
Before that battle, last week also finally brought Carrie and Lucas together romantically, when — after he saved their daughter Dava in the previous episode — she found her old love and they re-consummated their relationship.
With two episodes to go in the drama, which airs Fridays at 10 PM on Cinemax, Ivana shared details on filming that massive fight scene with Christos, her sexy scene with Antony, and hinted at what’s still to come!
AccessHollywood.com: So last week’s episode – that was a long between-the-sheets scene between Lucas and Carrie. How long did it take to film?
Ivana Milicevic: No way! Really? It was so short because they had a lot of cameras (laughs). They had three cameras set on us. It was so short.
Access: One of the things that your character says in the episode when she’s about to leave Lucas — after they’ve been together again for the first time in 15 years — is, ‘It’s a one-time thing.’ Do you think she really believes that in that moment?
Ivana: She is trying to will it into happening, because, if you look at it, even when she says, ‘I don’t love you anymore,’ all of that is she is willing it into happening. She still loves this character and there isn’t a world where she can [have] both fathers of both children, because that’s finally talked about — the fact that Dava is [Lucas’ daughter].
Access: If Olek had not found Carrie, do you think she would have gone back into a relationship secretly with Lucas?
Ivana: I think she would have tried not to, but I think that their chemistry… Carrie had been sober for 15 years and Lucas coming to town was like the first drop of alcohol to the alcoholic. So little by little, now you’re just white knuckling things. Now you’re trying to… but you’ve got this ‘ism,’ you’ve got this love-ism or alcoholism and it’s on and now you have to go to rehab again to stop it… . And even that day, when she came with the locket to his house, she didn’t necessarily go there to sleep with him. She was just going there to talk and see what [would happen]. I think it was like, ‘OK, let’s talk about everything.’ And then she sees Kat Moody coming out of the house… and I think [with] the mixture of kind of jealousy and like, ‘Oh, I’m worried about you, you’re fine,’ she turned into a chick.… You’re like, ‘She has no right, she has no right,’ but that’s people.
Access: Tell me about the fight scene and how long that took to film.
Ivana: That took an entire day. Normally, if it were a movie, a scene of that length would take a week. We were just gung ho, four cameras placed at different parts of the apartment. Thankfully that whole room was padded for me because the producers care for me very, very much and I must note that the scenes where Antony was shooting in a prison, [those were] all concrete. They turned his place into a completely padded room [for me]. The floor was padded, the wall was padded, when he slammed me against it, and so it was a lot easier for me, the more delicate of the sexes to be thrown around.
Access: You’re saying that after that crazy scene?
Ivana: Well, you still get hurt. I still got hurt a little bit, but listen, he’s the mack. He has been doing the fight scenes in freezing cold water and on super-hot concrete. I had one on concrete.
Access: What did you hurt? I know Antony had one where he had to have stitches.
Ivana: I didn’t have to have stitches. I’m pretty hard to break, but I didn’t have as much to do as he did. Before Carrie slams Olek’s hand with a hubcap, I was backing in and my ankle hit a corner that wasn’t covered — really hard — and my ankle was swollen. And in the scene where I use part of the broken chair and I start to swing at him like a frickin’ banshee (laughs) — that was a created stick — I hit him, but it bounced off of him and it hit me [and] it did have a metal part in it.
Access: You called Episode 8 an 8 on a scale of 1-10. So what’s coming up next then with Episode 9?
Ivana: Carrie loses her sh**!
Access: Are people going to need a supply of warm baths to calm themselves down after ‘Banshee’ ends its run in two more episodes time?
Ivana: I think so, because people who love it are addicted to it and crazy about it, which is amazing and I love and support our fans so much because we should be so lucky. We’re so grateful. Like really. That does not happen all the time and it seems that people are really moved. So, if you are one of those people who likes and are addicted to the show, then yeah, get a support system in place. Maybe [have] a party [and] people that are there, get some sort of a group setting where everyone can share, take turns and support each other. Like [showrunner] Greg Yaitanes said, we left nothing. We literally sweat blood and tears for this show… and we really gave it everything that we had.
“Banshee” airs Fridays at 10 PM on Cinemax.
-- Jolie Lash